Go to Japanese Page

Project of Keeping Our Memories of the ASO Volcanic Disaster for Our Children

kMiyuki YOSHIKAWA, Shinfichro IKEBE, Yasuaki SUDO (AVM), Tsuneomi KAGIYAMA, Shin YOSHIKAWA (Kyoto Univ.) Toshikuni MIYAMOTO (Aso City School Board), Takafumi YAMAMURA (Minamiaso Village School board), Kouji FUJITA (Aso City), Takafumi YOSHIZATO (Minamiaso Village) , Akihiko TERADA (Tokyo Inst. of Tech. Univ.),, Kyoto Univ. , Aso City School Board, Minamiaso Village School Board, Aso City and Minamiaso Village.l
This two-year project, gKeeping Our Memories of the Aso Volcanic Disaster for Our Children,h has been executed by a project team composed of the Aso Volcano Museum (AVM), the Aso Volcanological Laboratory of Kyoto Univ., the Aso City School Board and the Minamiaso Village School Board, in the Aso Volcanic Area (AVA), Kumamoto, Japan, and other related parties since April of 2009. Our main goal is to provide and raise awareness on disaster prevention to those who live in the AVA. To do so, we have established and implemented a system that helps elementary school students and residents of the AVA to learn about the importance of disaster prevention while studying about disasters and volcanology of the AVA, with the supported of the residents, who contribute by recounting their memories of the disaster.
Many residents and visitors have fallen victim to disasters related to eruptions of the Aso Volcano, beginning in the early twentieth century through the 1970s. Twelve visitors and laborers in 1958 and three visitors in 1979 lost their lives near the active crater. Furthermore, three visitors died from effects of the volcanic gas (SO2) although there was no eruption at the time. Tragically, a large number of resident were damaged from volcanic ashes during a eruption. Lahar and a flood occurred on a heavy rainy day. As eruptions have not been since 1993 and governments in the AVA established rescue systems, there have been fewer victims, making it more difficult to keep the memories of these disasters alive among the younger generations. AVM is one of the organizations that provides both formal and informal education@in volcanology. We have a program for children called eKids in Aso Volcanologists Project,f through which elementary schools study geoscience relating to the AVA. The project helps elementary school students develop love of their hometown and raises awareness on disaster prevention. Awareness leads to good judgment, and good judgment helps to improve behavior, if they ever have to face disasters.
Project Structure
A project, developed from eKids in Aso Volcanologists Project,f is composed of four components.
(1) An Educational program for sixth grade students called eKids in Aso Volcanologists Project,f through which all Japanese sixth grade students learn about the volcano; learning is also expanded through the program by adding research for volcanic disasters and survivorsf memories.
(2) Collecting software and browsing research data by the students
(3) A teacher training program called eWe Are Volcanologists!'. This is an adventure-plan tour for teachers to lead the students. They can learn about volcanoes and disasters while experiencing the tour with a team of volcanologists and experts in disaster prevention. The volcanologists can also get a chance to communicate with the teachers.
(4) Educational leaflets on volcano for visitors. Many visitors from other countries (including Korea and China) stay in the AVA. We distribute the leaflets in Japanese, English, Korean and Chinese to provide the visitors with essential information on disaster prevention.